Official Codex Discord Server

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

Completed Let's solve puzzles and get spooked in Scratches

Discussion in 'Codex Playground' started by Strange Fellow, Oct 1, 2019.

  1. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Scratches is the first game by indie studio Nucleosys, released in 2006. According to Wikipedia, it is the first commercial adventure game ever to be made in Argentina, with Nucleosys’ follow-up project Perfil de Riesgo: Casos Federales (Risk Profile: Federal Cases) presumably the second and last one. It is also, according to some source or other I’ve forgotten, quite spooky. The question is, can Scratches surpass such feats as producing Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi, as well as harboring Nazi fugitives in the aftermath of WWII, and claim the title of Argentina’s greatest accomplishment?

    The answer, of course, is no.

    Anyway, let’s get to it.

    Part 1: Introduction (open)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The camera pans over a dirty bathroom in which a series of photographs are hung on a wire to dry. Narration kicks in:

    I arrived at Blackwood Manor one cold Saturday morning, amidst a thick veil of fog.

    The weather didn’t look good and there was an unnatural calm surrounding the area, yet I soon became entangled with the place.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Saturday, October 12th.

    The cloudy sky above me seemed rather unsettling and almost made me lose my balance. I felt a curious urge to run for shelter, and my new home in the distance seemed very inviting.

    The gates creak ominously open, and we’re given control. Wait, do we even know why we’re here? No, we do not, but don’t worry, all will be revealed in due time.

    [​IMG]

    The gameplay is simple enough: The world is presented through a first-person perspective, and you can look around with the mouse and left-click on objects of interest to grab, look at and/or manipulate them. Standard Myst-like stuff.

    First item on the agenda: we do a 180 and try to drive off again, like any sane person would.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We grab the keys from the glove compartment, put them in the ignition, and…

    [​IMG]

    Wouldn’t want to leave while we still can, now would we? Instead, we approach the manor.

    [​IMG]

    There are a couple of side paths we could take at this point, leading to a garage and a greenhouse, but they’re both locked for the time being. I’m sure we’ll be back.

    [​IMG]

    We arrive at the front door. You’ll observe that the door handle is on the right-hand side (and quite badly aligned with the keyhole). The interactable prompt, however, is situated on the left-hand side, where there is no door handle. Spooky.

    We get the house key from our inventory and enter the manor.

    [​IMG]

    We’re greeted by a musty entrance hall, some stairs to the left, a lounge to the right, the ticking of a clock, and after a few seconds, the ringing of a phone. Now that’s what I call good timing! We locate the phone and pick up the receiver.

    [​IMG]

    Hello?

    [​IMG]

    The voice acting is quite poor.

    [​IMG]

    Jerry is apparently a friend of ours.

    [​IMG]I see that piece of junk you got there is working.



    My thoughts exactly! I was afraid it’d fall apart as soon as I laid my fingers on it.

    [​IMG]So how did you find everything? Do you like the place?



    It’s… hard to tell yet. I’m very impressed, that’s for sure!

    [​IMG]You sound odd… is everything OK?



    Yes yes yes, it’s perfectly fine, it’s just that I’m in awe. I mean pleasantly surprised. This house is like a dream come true.

    …Really?


    [​IMG]So you do like it! You got me worried there for one second.



    I’m telling you, I’m going to turn this place into a factory of horror stories!

    [​IMG]Good, you ought to finish that book. I’m rooting for you, mate. You sure everything is in order?



    Well I just got here, let me have a look around and I’ll get back to you if I find anything strange.

    [​IMG]Excellent! I’ll talk to you later. *click*

    Well, that helps clear things up. From this lore dump, we learn that our character’s name is Michael, and that he is a writer of horror stories, come to this remote abandoned house in search of inspiration. I wonder what the average life expectancy of adventurous horror writers is.

    [​IMG]

    We can get close-ups of all the paintings, of which there are a ton, but there’s nothing interesting about them. We try the light switch.

    [​IMG]

    Well, that’s as ominous as it is unexpected.

    In lieu of opening some windows and airing out the cobwebs and general feeling of creeping dread, we decide to go exploring. Mysteries await.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2019
    • Brofist x 5
    • incline x 1
    • Thanks! x 1
    • Prestigious x 1
    • Friendly x 1
    • :M x 1
    ^ Top  
  2. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,872,437
    Location:
    Djibouti
    Scratches, aka "Going around the house just to find that one specific old newspaper among the hundred million billion stacks: The Game" :M
     
    • Funny Funny x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    ^ Top  
  3. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Part 2: Loredumps (open)

    We move through a few dining rooms and hallways (this house is huge) but find nothing worth covering in detail, until we arrive at a study.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    In this room, we learn that Michael is a bit of a wimp. We head over to the bookshelf.

    [​IMG]

    Michael forgets that he isn’t at a dinner party, and spouts feigned pleasantries at an empty room.

    [​IMG]

    Apparently, this house once belonged to a James T. Blackwood.

    On the desk at the centre of the room, we find what is presumably Mr. Blackwood’s journal.

    [​IMG]

    We give it a read:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Updated my journal. The TL;DR of it (no, I didn’t expect you to read all that) is that Blackwood was working on constructing a bridge somewhere in Africa, when a strange tribe of natives began stalking the crew. Some time later, he witnessed a horrific sacrificial ceremony wherein one tribesman is torn apart by the others, possibly under the influence of some strange mask…

    We also grab an empty envelope and a boring tool (not to be confused with a boring tool, which is what Michael is) from the desk drawers.

    [​IMG]

    Michael is a wimp, exhibit B.

    [​IMG]

    Later still, he discovered that he could write.

    ***

    A great deal of fruitless drawer opening later…

    [​IMG]


    The kitchen is as dusty and dingy as the rest of the place. There’s nothing in the fridge, which Michael remarks could use a good cleaning.

    There are three doors leading out of the kitchen, not including the one we came in through. One leads to the back garden, which we'll return to later. That leaves the two included in the picture above. Behind the first, we find what appears to be a servant’s quarters.

    [​IMG]

    On the desk is a mysterious, and most assuredly ominous, piece of paper:

    [​IMG]

    This, by the way, is what our inventory looks like. In addition to the mysterious paper, we're lugging around two heavy suitcases full of Michael's things, a notebook, the boring tool, and the key to the front door. Right after this screenshot was taken, we also find a pencil in one of the desk drawers.

    Back to exploration. Moving through the door at the back of the room, we arrive at…

    [​IMG]

    The bathroom from the intro cinematic! These pictures are probably important.

    [​IMG]

    This must be Mr. Blackwood. In addition, there’s a photo of the fountain we walked past in the garden earlier. A clue? Who knows.

    Retracing our steps, we return to the kitchen and try the next door, which Michael informs us goes down to the basement. Frankly, I don’t care that Michael fancies himself the next Edgar Allan Poe, this is a horror game and I am not going down there, so help me God.

    [​IMG]

    Good thing it’s locked.

    Having explored the entire ground floor, we move back to the entrance hall, but not before nabbing a large knoife from one of the kitchen drawers. Fortunately, Michael is fully licensed, and picks it up.

    On the coffee table in the lounge adjacent to the entrance hall is another diary.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    TL;DR: Angst! Someone who knew Mr. Blackwood betrayed someone at some point, and is completely paranoid about it. He or she hears whispers in the walls, emanating from the basement.

    [​IMG]

    :shredder:

    Anyway, that just about takes care of all there is to do on the ground floor for now. Time to head upstairs.

    [​IMG]
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    ^ Top  
  4. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Yep, this game is pretty bad.

    Part 3: Vertical level design (open)

    I remember Jerry said a nice room had been prepared for me upstairs.

    [​IMG]

    Up the stairs we go. To the left is a dingy bathroom, wherein we discover that the water isn’t running, and to the right is a hallway straight out of the Shining.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Lovely and normal pictures adorn the walls.

    [​IMG]

    We head down the hall. The door on our right leads to a bedroom with nothing of note. To the left…

    [​IMG]

    A collection of spears and shields, and in the corner, a pair of elephant tusks in a glass display case.

    [​IMG]

    On the other side of the room, a collection of masks. One is conspicuously missing.

    Moving to the end of the hallway, we find the room that has been prepared for us. Michael is impressed:

    [​IMG]

    We drop off our suitcases, inside of which we find a copy of Michael’s latest book, as well as a letter from Jerry. It's nothing interesting enough to reproduce here, but he does mention that the house seems to have a rat problem. Hmm...

    There's also a notebook with some phone numbers in it:

    [​IMG]

    We'll be giving Barbara a call before too long. It gets awfully lonely out here, after all.

    Now that we're settled, we can do a proper survey of the room. The first item of interest is a crumpled piece of paper in the bin.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    "Barred the doorway"... hmmm... I wonder what had distressed the writer this much.

    Oh, dear.

    [​IMG]

    There’s a doctor’s bag over by the fireplace containing a stethoscope and some sketches.

    [​IMG]

    We nab the stethoscope – as one does – and look at the pretty pictures:

    [​IMG]

    An anatomical drawing of a goblin – Russian by the look of its posture…

    [​IMG]

    And of a woman, complete with the lower abdomen bull-demon that all women share.

    That’s it for this room for now, since Michael thinks it’s too early to go to bed. Instead, we move further up the stairs, to the attic.

    [​IMG]

    To our left is a door, which is jammed shut, and the other two both lead to small rooms filled with piles of rubbish and precious little else. However, we find a metal rod among the refuse…

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Which fits onto a small stove in the adjacent room. Unfortunately there’s no way to light it.

    [​IMG]

    Just like your life, lmao.

    Moving on, there’s a spiral staircase leading even further upwards, into the tower.

    [​IMG]

    We go up...

    [​IMG]

    An lo, there is nothing, apart from a handy window from which to throw ourselves, should the need arise. Let’s try the other staircase.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    It’s yet another room filled with rubbish. Perched on an end table is an old music box, because of course there’s an old music box.

    [​IMG]

    It plays a sweet tune that goes out of key about halfway through. It’s no wonder so many horror stories are filled with clichés, if these are really the lives of the people who write them.

    [​IMG]

    There’s also a chest, and a pile of old newspapers, which Michael refuses to have a closer look at unless he has a specific date to search for. We'll keep it in mind.

    Inside the chest is a lantern – which is duly yoinked – as well as some old photographs showing little of interest. As, we go to leave the room, however:

    [​IMG]

    :eek:

    That’s it for the attic. I’m slightly lost at this point, but after a bit of rummaging around (in-game and... elsewhere) we find a key hidden in a vase under the stairs. Dontcha love pixel hunts. Doesn’t say where it goes, but there aren’t too many options.

    The closest locked door leads to the basement. We try the key, and…

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Dagnabbit.

     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2019
    • Brofist Brofist x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    ^ Top  
  5. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,872,437
    Location:
    Djibouti
    Gee, I thought I was the only one of this opinioun :M
     
    • Doggy Doggy x 1
    ^ Top  
  6. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    It seems that way. Had a glance at the Codex thread for the sequel, and people are praising this game left and right. I can only assume these are the sort of people who consider puzzles in adventure games a necessary evil and don't actually like them. There's always the possibility that the story could yet make up for this lousy display, but frankly it's not looking good.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    ^ Top  
  7. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Part 4: Hello operator (open)

    [​IMG]

    Down into the basement we go.

    [​IMG]

    And it’s not too bad, really. The demonic furnace from Home Alone is here, but it appears docile. Michael is less than enthused, however.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There’s a fuse box on the wall. The switches do nothing. Surprised?

    [​IMG]

    Okay, maybe it's not completely docile after all.

    Not much else is down here. There’s a valve that won’t budge, as well as a drain cover on the floor. At this point, Michael is straight up not having a good time:

    [​IMG]

    :eek:

    We quickly vacate the basement.

    Time to call Jerry again. Not for comfort, of course, but to, uh… discuss the electricity. Yes.

    [​IMG]

    We’re also given the option to call Barbara, which is one of the numbers we found in the notebook in our suitcase.

    [​IMG] Hello?


    Jerry, it's me.

    [​IMG] What's up Michael?


    Everything seems to be fine... except, the lights don't work.

    [​IMG]Oh, you don't have to worry, I forgot to tell you. I had an electrician, one that I trust, to meet you there this morning. You know how a lack of power can be a recurring issue in old places like that. He should be arriving soon.

    In case you spot weirdly constructed sentences and missing words here and there, know that it's the game, not my transcription.

    That's good to know. I'll set up my stuff and let you know how everything does later.

    [​IMG] Perfect! Have fun. And don't forget to stop by the gates to meet that guy!


    Sure.
    *click*

    Gates it is.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There is, however, something in the mailbox.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Typical contractors…

    Back to Jerry we go.

    [​IMG]

    Jerry... we have a problem.

    [​IMG] What happened?


    The electrician missed me! He left a note in the mailbox.

    [​IMG] Bloody hell! He was supposed to meet you at the gate early this morning. I thought he was just being late.

    ...except he couldn't have arrived before we did, because I checked the mailbox first thing. In fact, I also went out just before making the call about the lights being out, meaning that the electrician must've arrived, dropped off his note, and left again, all while Michael was speaking to Jerry on the phone right by the front door. He didn't knock or anything, Michael failed to hear his car, and he was here for less than 15 seconds. Unbelievable, or typical contractors? You decide.

    Damn! Then I must've missed him for a few minutes. What the heck am I supposed to do now?

    [​IMG] Why don't you go check the fuses yourself? Maybe it isn't that serious.


    Jerry, all the fuses seem to be fine. I think the problem might be a little more complicated than that.

    [​IMG] I see...


    What should we do now?

    [​IMG] Go get some candles!


    You're joking, right?

    No u, Michael. It's the middle of the fucking day.

    [​IMG] No... I'm not! I'm calling this guy right away, and I'm afraid he won't be able to stop by until tomorrow. He was already driving there today as a personal favour.


    There must be something you can do! I don't feel comfotable walking around this place with dim lights, I barely know it...

    [​IMG] Michael, come on! Where's your sense of adventure? It'd be like you're living in the past century. Exquisite victorian house... lit by candles... what I wouldn't give to be in your place.


    I left my sense of adventuring back in London, thanks. I have work to do.

    It's the middle. of. the. fucking. day.

    [​IMG] Then do it! What else could you ask for? Now you have the chance to experience first hand one of your period pieces.


    Oh, very funny. Try getting that guy over here as soon as possible.

    [​IMG] Don't worry, I will. Make sure you find some candles before it gets too dark.


    Yes... candles... bye.

    [​IMG]


    Thank Christ the game throws you a bone here. I’m sick of drawer-opening.

    [​IMG]

    Michael checks the time. I forgot to mention this before, but examining the grandfather clock will give us the current time, which progresses as we solve stuff. We started the game at 9:00 AM. By the way, the AM/PM system is retarded. That’s right, Anglos.

    Back to the game. Proving himself a master of procrastination, Michael decides to call Barbara instead of getting to work.

    [​IMG]

    "Arthate productions"? What in Heaven's name was that?

    [​IMG] Oh, hi boss! I was just fooling around.


    Well, don't. I don't want people thinking I'm some kind of studio. And don't call me boss.

    [​IMG] I'm sorry, it's just that no one was calling and I got excited.


    I told you it was going to be that way, girl. But I still need you there... I just hope you're not being bored to death?

    "Girl"? Who does Michael think he is, a pimp? Judging by what we know about him so far, he can barely wipe himself without assistance.

    [​IMG] Oh, don't worry, I'm studying tongues during my spare time. I love that so much!


    That's great, but don't lower your guard. As soon as I publish my new book, that place is going to get riddled with phone calls and hundreds of fan mail.

    Sure it is, Michael... sure it is.

    [​IMG] That's the spirit, boss! I know your new book is going to be a huge success.


    Of course it will... as soon as I find a proper ending. And stop calling me boss!

    [​IMG] As you wish, boss. Oh, sorry!


    Thanks, goodbye.

    [​IMG] Good luck!

    *click*

    That wasn’t helpful.

    At this point I am out of ideas for how to progress the story, and turn to Ye Olde Adventure Gayme Tricke of using everything in the inventory on everything else. Turns out that using the pencil we found in the maid’s room on the ominous piece of paper with indecipherable scratches on it reveals a letter in Italian. I don’t even know how to begin to make sense of that. Michael doesn’t read Italian, of course, but there is someone who does. Someone who loves studying “tongues”…

    [​IMG] Hello?


    Hey, it's me. Barbie, dear, I need to ask you a favour.

    It's almost worth starting over and making this a video LP just so you get to hear Michael's voice actor say "Barbie, dear".

    [​IMG] Bring it on.


    I found a letter here and I'm curious about it. It's in Italian... do you think you could translate for me?

    [​IMG] My, Mr. Arthate, are we being naughty?


    Mrs. Stiles...

    Cringe...

    [​IMG] Yes yes, of... of course I can. Just send me the letter and I'll put hands to work as soon as I have it here.


    Excellent! Hmmm I wonder if the postman will come by. I feel like I'm the last person alive on the whole planet here.

    [​IMG] Have you told the post office in Rothbury that you were moving to Blackwood manor?


    Yes, Jerry did. I just hope they don't forget about me, that's all. In any case, thank you, you're such a dear.

    [​IMG] That's what I'm here for.


    Actually, that's what I'm paying you for. Anyway, I'll go and try mailing that letter.

    [​IMG] I'll be standing by for action!


    Thanks, goodbye.

    [​IMG] Good luck!

    *click*

    Alrighty, it’s mailing time. We put the letter in the envelope, jot down the address, and into the mailbox it goes.

    [​IMG]

    Time to call Jerry again, for no real reason except that there’s nothing else to do.

    [​IMG] Yes...


    Jerry, I'm freaking out! I couldn't find a single candle inside this place!

    [​IMG] You're kidding me! I can't believe it... did you look well?


    Yes, every single room, drawer, box, cabinet... nothing! No candles!

    He's not kidding, believe me.

    [​IMG] Alright, listen: the town isn't too far away. No more than twenty minutes' drive. If you can't find some candles there, I'll eat my hat.


    You'll eat your whole closet! This is getting on my nerves.


    [​IMG] Come on, it's just a quick ride. You know how to get there?


    Yeah, I saw it on my way here. Did you call Mr. Busy Electrician who couldn't hold on for just five more minutes?


    [​IMG] Yes, he'll be doing me another special favour and will be going there tomorrow afternoon. It's the best he can do... you have to bear in mind it's Sunday! Will charge extra, of course.


    I don't care! I have no power! I'll get him myself if he doesn't show up!

    All right, settle down, Mr. Whiny Spastic, that's a twenty minute drive you're facing.

    [​IMG] Calm down! Drive to the town before it gets too dark. You won't be able to find your way back if it does.


    Yeah... I had to buy some food anyway.

    [​IMG] There you go! Godspeed, and drive safe.


    Right...

    Michael has got some real issues.

    Time to go for a drive. We head out to our motorvehicle, turn the ignition, and…

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    :hmmm:

    Next time: more phone calls. I'm sorry.

     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2019
    • Brofist Brofist x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • :M :M x 1
    ^ Top  
  8. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,872,437
    Location:
    Djibouti
    Just wait till the game has you find one specific old can among the thousands lying around the house :lol:
     
    • Sweat gathers upon my brow, let me dab it Sweat gathers upon my brow, let me dab it x 2
    • Excited! Excited! x 1
    ^ Top  
  9. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Speak of the devil.

    Part 5: This inanity goes to 11 (open)


    Last time on Scratches: Michael made a right arse of things. Jerry must be notified at once.

    [​IMG] Let me guess... Michael.


    Look, it's meta-commentary on the frequency of godawful boring phone calls. Extremely clever, 10 gaming journalism points out of 10.

    Jerry, you won't believe this! It's insane. My car is dead.

    [​IMG] What!? Are you sure? Have you checked its pulse?


    Hardy har har.

    I'm not joking, it's gone.

    [​IMG] My friend, this completely redefines the term 'suspension of "disbelief" you sometimes use for your stories.


    'Even I can't believe you'd be THIS stupid!'

    I know, I'm speechless. I forgot the lights on and the car ran out of battery. All because of that bloody fog! Jerry, you've got to help me. Get over here.

    [​IMG] Michael, look at time! I can't drive to Northumberland right now.


    But Jerry, I can't spend the whole night without one single source of light. I barely know this place and I won't be able to find my way. Heck, I don't even know if it's rid of ghosts yet...

    [​IMG] Are you a sleepwalker, Michael? You lie down on the bed, you sleep, you wake up, and you'll have tons of bright light then.


    That's not helping... and you're the one who got me into this mess in the first place.

    [​IMG] Hold on a minute. It's not my fault if the electrician missed you for a few minutes, there aren't any candles in a three storey mansion, and your car's battery was low.


    OK OK, listen... when will you be coming back to Rothbury?

    [​IMG]

    Yeah, I guess. And I don't think there's any "plan B" either.

    [​IMG] I'm afraid not. Sorry, I really took all the precautions to make your stay there as comfortable as possible, but I guess sometimes things are just meant to go wrong.


    Apparently... alright, I'll be on my way then.

    [​IMG] Call me back if you need anything. And Michael... just don't let this situation get on your nerves.


    I promise it won't. Goodbye.


    *click*

    You know what? We’ll badger Jerry some more.

    [​IMG]

    It's getting darker. A whole day of pointless calls has gone by.

    Jerry, it's me.

    [​IMG] What's up, Michael?


    Do you know anything about the previous inhabitants of this house?

    [​IMG] Not much, just that they were some strange individuals. There's also the murder...


    You're kidding me! A murder?

    [​IMG] And old fashioned murder
    [sic]. You'd probably love the details but sadly I don't know very much. It's old history really, although it caused quite a stir there in Rothbury. It seems the owner, Jay Blackwood I think, went mad and killed his wife. I do remember the date though: May 1963.


    James... James Blackwood according to the stuff I've been reading.

    [​IMG] Oh, so you're already turning the place upside down. I should have thought so.


    There's enough material for a whole series of stories here, you know!

    [​IMG] After you finish your book, my friend!


    Yeah, yeah... but it can never hurt poking around a little.

    [​IMG] Would you just get back to work? Call me if you need anything!


    Alright, goodbye.

    *click*

    ‘Right, I forgot to tell you, this place was the scene of a horrific murder not long ago. Hardly worth mentioning, really. Listen, you know I love it when you disrupt my work with pointless calls every five minutes, but I really should get going…’

    Either way, we’ve got an interesting date, and a pile of newspapers in the attic. Even Michael can figure this one out.

    [​IMG]

    Nice, tell the reporters the whole story BEFORE you apprehend the guy. Great job, Inspector Japp.

    [​IMG]

    It’s 7:00 PM. What is this guy, a toddler?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We wake up in the middle of the night.

    [​IMG]

    Odd banging noises emanate from the walls. We head to the gallery next door to investigate.

    [​IMG]

    That's odd: the glass case containing the elephant tusks is missing, and in its place is a boarded up door. A hammer is lying on the floor. We investigate the hammer…

    [​IMG]

    And find ourselves suddenly back in our room. It had just been a bad dream! Unfortunately, Michael’s night is far from over.

    [​IMG]

    Scratching sounds come from the fireplace. We investigate by putting the stethoscope on the fireplace wall like a total moron, which, of course, works.

    [​IMG]

    We head downstairs to the living room fireplace, and repeat the procedure.

    [​IMG]

    From below, eh? The basement, eh? I don’t know about you, but that’s exactly what I wanted to hear!

    [​IMG]

    That’s as good an excuse as any. Never mind that we have a box of matches in our inventory.

    We head upstairs again, to find that the scratching has ceased. We go back to sleep.

    [​IMG]

    Creepy Murder Manor: Day 2.

    [​IMG]

    This time: Thunderstorm! Today, the game spikes the brightness every ten seconds to emulate flashes of lightning. It’s terrible.

    [​IMG]

    The time is 9:00 AM. The phone’s ringing!

    Hello?

    [​IMG]

    You mean this storm has hit there too? Seems like the entire Universe is falling here. I'm afraid to go outside!

    [​IMG] Well... the better then as I won't be able to come for you. I'm deeply sorry, but it's seemingly impossible driving in Northumberland, even less getting anywhere near the manor. I understand many of the roads are closed.


    So much for my hopes of seeing Mr. Electrician today, then. The benefits of being away from society, eh? I should have listened to you...

    [​IMG] Don't panic! I'll come for you as soon as this thing is over. You just hang on in there.


    It's not like I have any other choice, do I?

    You could always throw yourself from the tower.

    [​IMG] I'm afraid not my friend. This storm has the power to disturb the dead!


    Well, it'd seem like this very same storm has awakened the evil spirits resting inside my new home.

    [​IMG] What's that?


    Not sure, but I happened to hear some odd sounds last night. Kind of... "scratching" noises down in the basement.

    [​IMG] I do remember the cleaning ladies saying something about rats.


    Unless we are talking about mutant rats here, I don't think that's the problem.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG] Michael, my friend, you were tired from a long trip and stressed about the problems you found there. On top of that, you have moved to a very old house. Guess what's the most common complaint from people moving to old houses?


    Ghosts on the loose?

    Cool band name.

    [​IMG] Sort of... now go focus on your book while you still have enough light. I'll be there as soon as possible!


    Thanks, bye.

    *click*

    [​IMG]

    The game won’t let me leave the house. It also won’t let me go back to bed, or make a start on the liquor cabinet. Now what? It occurs to me that I have no idea where Michael goes to the bathroom.

    Maybe he can finally get a start on the book?

    [​IMG]

    Michael, honestly. You’re pathetic. 'It was too cold to write!' Jesus Christ.

    We should probably have a look at the cabinet with the elephant tusks in the African gallery, which so mysteriously disappeared in our dream last night.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Examining the bottom of the case reveals a panel. However…

    [​IMG]

    Well, then.

    I’m not even going to pretend I didn’t consult a walkthrough at this point. Turns out there’s a spot on a painting in the upstairs bedroom across from the gallery, which when interacted with reveals a hidden safe. That’s right, a manor-wide pixel hunt.

    :retarded:

    I have no words.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here it is.

    [​IMG]

    We don’t know the combination, but we do know someone who knows everything about this house but seems to find great entertainment in not telling us jack shit unless specifically prompted to do so.

    [​IMG] Hello?


    Jerry, it's me.

    [​IMG] What's up, Michael?


    I found a safe box in a room upstairs... would you happen to know the combination?

    [​IMG] I think I should, let me see... I have the combination to the safe right here.


    Oh, great! Tell me.

    [​IMG] 03 2 11. Just remember to share it if you bump into any expensive jewellery.


    Of course I will! Bye.

    *click*

    So this chucklefuck knew all along that there was a safe in the house, AND has incentive to tell us where it is and how to open it, but doesn't, all because the game needs us to go on a goddamn pixel hunt? Fucking twat. I suppose he and Michael deserve each other.

    We go upstairs and try the combination.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The safe opens! Now for the contents:

    [​IMG]

    We have a new phone number to call. There’s also a ‘generic looking key, blue in colour’.

    There are only two locked doors right now, and they’re both in the attic. The first one:

    [​IMG]

    ...is actually jammed, not locked, meaning a key won't help us. But the second…

    [​IMG]

    ...also won’t open, because there’s a key on the other side. We try to push the key out with the boring tool, but Michael whines that he needs some way of retrieving it once it’s pushed out.

    [​IMG]

    There’s a piece of newspaper stuck under a can of paint right next to the door.

    [​IMG]

    We wedge it under the door, and…

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Nice, okay, go cry about it. We have a second key, which fits.

    [​IMG]

    We enter what appears to be an art studio.

    [​IMG]

    Or just, you know, an artist.

    On the bench are what looks like blueprints for the building:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Indeed they are. The ground floor:

    [​IMG]

    The first floor (PSA for normal people: when Brits say first floor, they actually mean second floor):

    [​IMG]

    But wait, something’s not quite right…

    Strange, I don’t remember that room being there.

    There’s a hidden room between the bedroom with the safe and the stairway. Interesting.

    [​IMG]

    The layout of the attic holds no secrets, however.

    On the bench we also find another generic-looking key, this one silver, as well as the lid of a paint can, which we pick up and carry with us because this is an adventure game.

    [​IMG]

    At least he’s upfront about the nonsensicality of his actions.

    [​IMG]

    Next to the bench is a stool with a hammer on it. Yoink!

    We move on to the next room, the one with the jammed door. This time we enter from the other side, without issue.

    [​IMG]

    It’s just another storage room. There’s a ladder up to some shelves filled with various cans, and an object which, once picked up, turns out to be an oil can.

    What follows next is a really inane piece of adventure game problem solving, so fasten your seatbelts:

    Looking at the cans on the shelf, Michael mentions that one of the cans is dirtier than the others. Actually, what he says is ‘one of them in particular was dusty than the rest but that’s the least of this game’s problems so I let it slide. Here are the cans:

    [​IMG]

    What we need to do is:
    1. Go downstairs and rummage through all the drawers in the entire building until we find a rag (it’s in the upstairs bathroom, if you were curious), which we can then use to clean the dust off the can. Literally just a gray, nondescript rag. Why we can’t use a towel, or a shirt, or just use your goddamn thumb to rub the dust off Michael you stupid piece of shit – I do not know. Manor-wide bullshit item hunt count: 3. :retarded:
    2. The cleaning reveals that it’s a can of oil. This was already easily discernible while it was coated in dust, but all right. What we then do, is use the boring tool to poke a hole in the side of the can (because Michael can’t get the lid off because he’s a wimp) and hold the oil lamp under the hole to fill it up. We now have a working oil lamp, whoop de doo. We don't actually need the lantern yet, but I feel that bullshit of this magnitude is best dealt with as soon as possible.
    We also use the knoife to cut off a length of rope tied to one of the roof supports. Whatever.

    At this point I’ve looked all over for levers or whatnot to open some hidden door to the mysterious room downstairs. I was way off. What we’re actually going to do is access the room from outside by rappelling down from the tower using the rope we just found. During a thunderstorm.

    :retarded:

    At the top of the spiral staircase, below an old wall lamp, there’s a large gash in the wall. Michael helpfully comments:

    [​IMG]

    We take the hammer to it, to make the gap wider. There’s now a hole straight through the wall of the tower. We attach the rope to the lamp, and feed it through the hole, like so:

    [​IMG]

    Then, we go halfway down the staircase and see that the rope lines up with one of the windows:

    [​IMG]

    It’s rappelling time, baby. But first, Michael has a good long think about it.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here we go.

    [​IMG]

    Dramatic music plays.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    It’s a nursery. Creepy glockenspiel music plays. You know the drill.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We snoop around the drawers, and find…

    [​IMG]

    1961, huh? Let’s get out of here, and check the newspapers.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Michael comments:

    My huge disappointment quickly gave way to an empty, void feeling. Something wasn't right here... I began wondering if James Blackwood was somehow involved with the death of his son.

    Yes, indeedy. Something seems ever so slightly fishy about bricking up the nursery and leaving it there like a haunted tomb instead of redecorating like a normal person. Also killing your wife two years later, I guess. One thing’s for sure, we need to have ourselves a talk with this Doctor Milton, who by all accounts was the previous inhabitant of Michael’s room.

    We go downstairs to make a phone call, but the line’s dead.

    [​IMG]

    Bummer. Michael still won’t go outside either, despite having rappelled down the side of the building just a few minutes ago.

    The time is now 2:00 PM, and it’s time to take a closer look at the panel under the elephant tuft case in the gallery. We try to pry it open with the knoife:

    [​IMG]

    The reason I hadn’t already tried this is because I had already tried it, but must’ve missed the interactable area by a millimeter or so. :hahano:

    All righty, looks like we’ll get to wheel this case out of the way. First we heed the adventure game constant that all wheels need oil to function, which means we probably need to use the oil can we found upstairs. We do, and we wheel:

    [​IMG]

    The cabinet rolls away to reveal the door from the dream. Its position suggests that it will lead to a small compartment under the stairs.

    [​IMG]

    We use the hammer to remove the boards, and the door creaks open…

    [​IMG]

    (you'll observe that it opens inwards, making those boards entirely useless)

    …and the game crashes.

    Join us next time, for Walking Through a Door: Take Two.

     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2019
    • Brofist Brofist x 2
    ^ Top  
  10. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    :salute:

    Without the commitment to finishing the LP I would've dropped this a long time ago. Never go full retard, adventure devs. You'd think by 2006 it'd be common knowledge that hidden object puzzles suck.

    That said...

    Part 6: Nighttime terrors (open)

    All right, here we go.

    [​IMG]

    …the game crashes again.

    Third time’s the charm: the game freezes once again as we walk through the door, but after no less than five minutes of waiting, it gets its groove back, and we get to see what’s behind it:

    [​IMG]

    There's nothing.

    [​IMG]

    Well, good thing we have a lantern then. We go to light it:

    [​IMG]

    …and the game freezes for the fourth time. It soon becomes apparent that the game has trouble with us doing literally anything inside the room. Meta-spook, or just fine Argentinian craftmanship?

    I fear for the life of the LP at this point, but thankfully, restoring to an earlier save does the trick, and we can enter the room and light the lantern undisturbed.

    [​IMG]

    Lighting up:

    [​IMG]

    Gah! It’s the fabled mask, it must be. Regaining our composure, we move some bamboo out of the way of the window, to shed some light on things (ehehe).

    [​IMG]

    There are some letters on a box in the space under the stairs.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    TL;DR: Brutality! Ritualistic slaughter! Cannibalism! I’m sure many Codexers would appreciate this example of moral upstanding Darwinism at play.

    There's another letter:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Aw, geez…

    So what’s next? As we enter our bedroom, Michael suggests that he’s ready to start writing. Took you long enough.

    We head over to the desk, put a sheet of paper in the typewriter and get going:

    [​IMG]

    Here’s what he’s come up with.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I’m not sure what to make of it. It’s not good or interesting, I’ll say that much.

    Let’s go see if the phones are still dead. Turns out they aren’t! Let’s get Jerry on the phone, and disturb his Sunday afternoon (by the way, the time is now 6:00 PM):

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG] Yes?


    Jerry, it's me... you won't believe what I've found here!

    [​IMG] Try me.


    It's about the happenings that led to the murder you told me about. There is an impressive back story surrounding this place and many loose ends. It would seem nobody ever stumbled upon this.

    [​IMG] Shouldn't you be working on your book?


    Are you listening to me? James Blackwood was into some weird stuff... and possibly dangerous. Something tells me this case is much more complex than it was thought to be.

    [​IMG] Why don't you inform the authorities? I'm sure they'll be dying to reopen a long forgotten case about some crazy old psycho killing his wife.


    'Oi, guv, you got a loicense for that mys'ry? I'm gonna 'ave to write you up for this, you know. And is that a knoife you're 'olding?'

    No way! And miss all the fun? I'm doing this on my own. I wonder if those noises I heard have anything to do with this... maybe James Blackwood was trying to hide something!

    [​IMG] Like in that book where an old man was guarding the netrance to Hell! I bet this James Blackwood person had a doorway like that in his basement. Those dreadful noises must be the sounds of the damned coming for you.


    Why thanks mate, that's been very helpful. Great to have friends like you.

    [​IMG] Then stop talking about all this nonsense! Do you have any idea how crazy it sounds? You're a writer, not some fancy PI.


    I'll get to the bottom of this. I know I will. I'm certain there's much more to James Blackwood than a simple act of murder.

    [​IMG] Now you're sounding more morbid than usual. "Simple act of murder". Oh goody.... just somebody died, nothing to worry about. This isn't like you, Michael. This whole thing is really affecting you.


    Well, Jerry, you didn't find the murder worth mentioning in the first place. Now who's insensitive? Bitch.

    Stop being a drama queen, I'm a grown up and I'm pretty aware of what I'm doing.

    ...relatively speaking.

    [​IMG] Fine, go chase around the ghost of James Blackwood. I'll stay here in the real world.


    I'll let you know about my progress.


    *click*

    That’s that. We turn, and Michael exclaims:

    [​IMG]

    It’s still 6 PM, by the way. That’s right. 6 PM. The guy’s been up for 9 hours.

    [​IMG]

    Nighty night…

    [​IMG]

    Again we wake in the middle of the night.

    I have a sneaking suspicion this has something to do with the mask we found. Let’s go look at it.

    [​IMG]

    It’s not there! What sinister game is afoot? We should go looking for it. We turn around and head back out the –

    [​IMG]

    Jesus F. Christ!

    The scene fades to black, and we wake up: it’s revealed that this, too, had been just a nightmare.




    …or had it?

    ...or HAD it?

    [​IMG]

    It’s still the middle of the night. The scratching has started up again.

    [​IMG]

    The witching hour…

    Last night we figured out that the scratches were coming from the basement. This time, we have a working lantern.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Let there be light!

    [​IMG]

    We head down.

    [​IMG]

    Everything looks normal. We have a closer look at the furnace.

    [​IMG]

    And we’re given the option to crawl in. :?

    Michael is fucked up enough to actually do it.

    [​IMG]

    We crawl along the narrow passageway, until we reach a brick wall with a hole through which we can see the inside of a small room or cell:

    [​IMG]

    We look for something to interact with, when

    [​IMG]

    A person passes by just outside the door! Fuck me. Time to say our Hail Marys and GTFO ASAP.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    It turns out that we’ve used up the last of our oil. The lantern is now useless.

    [​IMG]

    We head back upstairs, because Michael is naturally feeling sleepy after tonight’s proceedings.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Day 3. The mysteries just pile up, don't they.


    Sorry to let you down, but the game has slightly redeemed itself with this update. That was some genuinely effective spoop. I think it was the fact that there hasn't been any motion at all outside of the pre-rendered custscenes until this point, so it caught me off guard.
     
    • Sweat gathers upon my brow, let me dab it Sweat gathers upon my brow, let me dab it x 2
    ^ Top  
  11. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Bit of a long one.

    Part 7: I Come to the Garden Alone (open)


    We return now to your regularly scheduled Phone Quest 2006: So You Want to Be a Receptionist.

    [​IMG]

    First things first: it’s freezing.

    I seriously considered warming the place up.

    And that’s exactly what we’ll do.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Lovely, but there aren’t many matches left now.

    Next: what else? We call Jerry.

    [​IMG] Who is it?


    It’s me…

    [​IMG] The ghost hunter! Any contact with the other world yet?


    Actually… I’m not sure. Jerry, I’m definitely not alone in this house.

    [​IMG] What are you talking about?


    Last night I saw something… down below. It was moving. I wasn’t dreaming and I’m not making this up.

    [​IMG] Are you sure it wasn’t a mutant rat?


    [​IMG]
    ?


    Definitely no rat.



    [​IMG] I’m calling the police….


    No, no no! Not just yet.

    [​IMG] Michael, for Christ’s sake… you could have a burglar inside the house.


    Who ever heard of a burglar who stays until morning? A squatter is more likely.

    This is no burglar Jerry. It’s much more… interesting than that and I want to figure this out by myself.

    [​IMG] Have you taken leave of your senses?


    Just promise me you won’t call anyone. I can do this on my own.

    [​IMG] Whatever… just call me if you need any help. I’m driving there today.


    Right, bye.


    *click*

    I’m not allowed to call Barbara, as she’s taken Monday off. We go outside to see if the translation of the mysterious letter has arrived yet, but no dice.

    [​IMG]

    Let’s go down to the basement and check out this tunnel n the furnace, now that it’s light out.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    But inexplicably, we aren’t allowed to go in or even investigate the furnace wall. Wut? :?

    Nevertheless, there are several different things we could do at this point, and they involve the places we’ve yet to explore: the garage, the greenhouse, the chapel, and the path behind the back door, all of which were inaccessible to us yesterday due to the storm.

    Remember the silver key from the art studion in the attic? There’s a padlock on the garage. The next step is obvious.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The key fits.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    That is one heck of an automobile. Shame it’s in such a state of disrepair.

    [​IMG]

    Speaking of transport vehicles, there’s also a bicycle. Working the pedals…

    [​IMG]

    Lights up the torch mounted on the handlebar. Fancy.

    Over in the corner, there's a workbench with some interesting stuff on it:

    [​IMG]

    Oil cans, for instance. Guess if we can attempt to refill the lantern. Go on, take a wild fucking guess.

    [​IMG]

    There’s a pair of wire cutters and a screwdriver in the toolbox. We nab ‘em. Time to take a closer look at the car.

    [​IMG]

    Not only is it a classy and old automobile, it is also a haunted automobile.

    [​IMG]

    There’s an axe. I would like to pick up the axe, as then all our troubles with locked doors and drawers would be over.

    [​IMG]

    But tragically we cannot.

    There is however a crowbar leaning against the workbench, which we can pick up. That’ll no doubt come in handy.

    Next up: the path behind the house. I’ve been through there before, but neglected to mention it as there’s been no progress to be made… until now.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    It's a bit of a trek.

    [​IMG]

    We arrive at… a crypt.

    [​IMG]

    Who has a crypt?

    A wire binds the door handles together. Naturally, this has had Michael completely stumped up until now. But now, we have wire cutters.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Well that’s just lovely, innit.

    [​IMG]

    makesyouthink.jpg

    We casually stroll up to one of the coffins and put our hand on the lid.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    You’d better believe it, baby.

    [​IMG]

    What did you expect?

    But something's not quite right. If Mrs. Blackwood was indeed murdered and buried in the garden, how come she's lying in here? Most suspicious.
    (I don't know how Michael knows that this is Mrs. Blackwood's body, but he does, and it is. Maybe it's because of the skeleton boobs.)

    Anyway, let’s leave these decomposing old bones alone, and have ourselves a look, at last, at the famed Mr. Blackwood.

    [​IMG]

    Dun dun DUN.

    [​IMG]

    There are stairs leading down to a sublevel, but first, there are a few more things to investigate.

    [​IMG]

    The plaques, for instance. There’s also a conspicuous-looking stone there.

    [​IMG]

    It is indeed nabbable, and thus duly nabbed.

    Let’s go downstairs now.

    [​IMG]

    More coffins.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    To our left is a child-sized coffin. *shudder*

    [​IMG]

    That's mildly ridiculous, but all right.

    [​IMG]

    I'm actually with Michael on this one. Let’s split.

    [​IMG]

    Guess what? Yep, you guessed it.

    [​IMG] Yes?


    Hi Jerry.

    [​IMG] Michael, I was worried about you! Are you doing OK?


    Yes, I’m fine, and I think I know the identity of my intruder.

    [​IMG] Tell me! Who is it?


    James Blackwood.

    [​IMG] The Blackwood person…? Michael, are you serious? That the ghost of the murderer is roaming the house?


    I’m not talking about his ghost, Jerry… I’m talking about him.

    [​IMG] What the heck do you mean?


    I mean James Blackwood himself. Alive, in this house!

    [​IMG] What…? How is that possible?


    It makes sense. After murdering his wife, and realising what he’s done, he begs for help to Christopher Milton, who fakes his death.

    [​IMG] Milton, the previous owner? Michael, you’re losing your mind. Even if he managed to hide himself, how did he survive all this time? Milton has been missing for years…


    Good point, but I’m sure a desperate man like Blackwood would’ve found a way.

    [​IMG] Yes… by turning into a ghost! Wait a minute… *papers rustling* yeah, I have it right here: James Blackwood passed away on June, 1963. Would you please stop this?


    Jerry, just listen to me, I know I’m right… there’s only Mrs. Blackwood’s body in the crypt… his is missing!

    [​IMG] Oh God, Michael… you’ve really gone out of your mind… digging into coffins, what’s next? Desecrating the chapel?


    (this is a clue, but we’re getting ahead of ourselves)

    Whatever it takes to solve this mystery. You can only find stories like these in books.

    [​IMG]Precisely why I’m beginning to wonder about your sanity…


    You’ll see.


    *click*

    You'll see! You’ll all see!

    We have a new date to look up: June, 1963.

    [​IMG]

    A new phone number is scribbled on the newspaper. Goody.

    [​IMG]

    It's still early.

    [​IMG]

    We make use of the manual dialling option for the first time, and dial the number on the newspaper. Warning: long conversation ahead.

    [​IMG]

    The voice of Mr. William Bailey is Jerry's voice actor doing an absolutely terrible mishmash of what sounds like Australian, New Yorker, posh RP and Yorkshire accents. It's impossible to tell what he's going for. It's really something.

    Hi, are you Mr. William Bailey?

    [​IMG] That's me. And you are...


    Yes, my name is Michael Arthate. I'm a... journalist for a local newspaper in Rothbury.

    [​IMG] I see. And what is this all about?


    Well, you're the former police chief of this town, aren't you?

    [​IMG] Indeed. I served many years ago...


    And you were once in charge of a famous... or should I say infamous case here?

    [​IMG] Oh, bloody hell, don't tell me this is about James Blackwood!


    Well... yes. I'm writing a story for my newspaper. Uhm... the most famous police cases of Northumberland!

    [​IMG] Have you any idea how many times I talked about this? Go to your nearest library... I'm sure you'll find plenty of information about Blackwood there.


    Please, Mr. Bailey, I beg you! It won't be the same if I can have the information from someone who was there... and no less than the renowned William Bailey of Rothbury!

    [Charisma: Success]

    [​IMG] Alright son, spare me the nonsense. What is it that you want to know?


    Well, in the first place... what did Eva Mariani see exactly?

    [​IMG] She saw enough, son... James Blackwood was dragging a shape into a hole in the garden. At first Mrs. Mariani couldn't realise what it was, but eventually she made out the dead body of Catherine Blackwood with a serious wound.


    And Blackwood was automatically deemed guilty?

    [​IMG] He was found digging his wife, son.


    Delightful Spanglish.


    Why did James Blackwood never appear before a jury?

    How do you know this?

    [​IMG] When you're someone as renowned and famed as James Blackwood was, you can pretty much avoid the authorities. However, you can't avoid justice... and Justice was brought upon James Blackwood.


    Justice... how?

    You're so thick, Michael.

    [​IMG] He died shortly after the accusation. You should know about that.


    What happened to Dr. Christopher Milton?

    [​IMG] How should I know? You bet your life that slimy worm was up to something. I couldn't prove it though and I spent years investigating him. A shame we couldn't implicate him as much as James Blackwood.


    Are you saying he could have had something to do with the murder?

    [​IMG] Blackwood and Milton were very intimate. Milton did the impossible to aid his friend and even clear his name after he died. You do the math.


    *the maths.


    And was ever determined the cause of death of Catherine Blackwood?

    Lot of [sic] going on here at the moment.

    [​IMG] Yes... partly. Mrs. Mariani managed to see her thoat was slit open. "Ripped" she would say. It must've been horrible for the poor girl.


    Still... everything sounds so vague. As if something was missing.

    [​IMG] Are you questioning my performance on this case, son?


    You have photographic evidence of Blackwood burying his dead wife, and still you don't manage to put him away. You do the math.


    No... no no, sir. Not at all. I'm just trying to figure this out. Like, why a proper autopsy was never done?

    [​IMG] An autopsy to whom?


    My God, man.


    Please sir, this is very important to me and I could really use your help. I'm trying to fit all the pieces of this mystery together.

    [​IMG] Mystery? What mystery? You must be one of those people that just love splitting hairs, don't you?


    I don't think I understand, sir...

    [​IMG] Listen son, that cold blooded bastard murdered his wife, God knows why, he and his fancy doctors did the impossible to hamper our investigations. You don't have to be a brilliant detective to realise Blackwood did it.


    Evidently not.


    There's always a reason behind a murder. Nobody has ever found out why Blackwood did what he did.

    [​IMG] Psychopaths don't need any reasons, and James Blackwood turned into one precisely.


    There's got to be something else! I can't believe Blackwood flipped just like that one sunny day. It doesn't make any sense.

    [​IMG] People flip, son. You could be flipping right now, without knowing it, hehe.


    Well, then tell me how Blackwood reacted when you pulled his wife from beneath the ground.

    [​IMG] I beg your pardon?


    I mean Catherine Blackwood's body. When you dug in the garden of the manor...

    [​IMG] Like I said, they hampered the investigation. We never managed to set one foot inside the manor. What kind of bloody journalist are you, son?


    But... are you telling me you never actually retrieved the body?

    [​IMG] That's exactly what I'm telling you! Now if you don't mind...


    But but wait, this doesn't make any sense...

    [​IMG] Stop wasting my time dammit! I was enjoying my retirement until you had the brilliant idea of calling me. I don't want to hear anything else about this case ever again!


    Please, Mr. Bailey, don't...

    [​IMG] Leave. Me. Alone.

    *click*

    That was a whole bunch of stupid. First of all, even if Bailey was so spectacularly incompetent (or crooked) as to fail to make this thing stick to Mr. Blackwood, what stopped him from coming back to the manor later? Yes, Milton took over, but we know that he's been missing for years now. And why would James Blackwood fake his own death if he was, as Bailey says, above the law?

    Either way, informative stuff. Let’s see if that letter has arrived yet:

    [​IMG]

    It has indeed.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Secret secrets! Now we’re getting somewhere. Let's go have a look.

    [​IMG]

    Here it is. Inside is a picture:

    [​IMG]

    Chilling, and extremely incriminating. This is the picture that failed to put James Blackwood away for murder.

    Now what? I’ll tell you what: we go to the greenhouse.

    [​IMG]

    The door is rusted, but we have the can of oil from the attic now.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    This guy couldn’t get the door open because the hinges were rusted? :lol: Talk about helpless.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    First things first: there’s a shiny object on the floor right in front of the big tree.

    [​IMG]

    Ah, it’s in the drain, and unreachable. Let’s head up onto the upper walkway.

    [​IMG]

    There’s a shovel. Yoin–

    [​IMG]

    Consarn it. And stuck in the soil? I swear to God, it’s a wonder Michael can stand upright without assistance.

    [​IMG]

    In the far corner there’s a workbench, with a plant, some fertiliser, a watering can and a fumigator.

    In the drawer on the right are some shears:

    [​IMG]

    …and in the one on the left, some letters.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    TL;DR: It's from James Blackwood's diary, and it's really nothing, just angst, although he does mention the potted plant, which he apparently brought with him from Africa...

    On the grating next to the bench is a coil of hose. When we click on it, one end is fed into the soil and the other is slung over the railing.

    [​IMG]

    I see where this is going. We’re going to pump water into the hard-packed soil to free the shovel, aren’t we.

    There’s only one small problem:

    [​IMG]

    We need to get the water running. Since we’re now packing more or less a full set of tools, let’s see if we can’t make some headway on that immoveable valve down in the basement.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Oil does nothing.

    [​IMG]

    Wedging the crowbar in it, however…

    [​IMG]

    We give it a few good knocks with the hammer, and Bob's yer uncle.

    We go upstairs to see if that fixed the problem:

    [​IMG]

    It seems all right. Back to the greenhouse.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Yes indeed. The shovel is loose, and we take it with us. Next, we see about that shiny thing in the drain. Detaching the hose should do it:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We can follow the drain back out the door, but no further. We have no idea where it ends. Fun.

    [​IMG]

    There’s a side path right by the greenhouse. If we’re lucky, this could be it.

    [​IMG]

    It’s a clearing with a pond. We look around for the shiny, but there’s nothing. This is the right place, however. So what’s wrong? We clearly flushed the drain, right? Well, we did, but there’s one errant factor that we haven’t accounted for:

    This game is shit.

    We have to go back to the greenhouse, and use our shears on this:

    [​IMG]

    We... trim? the bush, and the drain is unclogged. Huh? How? What?

    [​IMG]

    The game fails to provide an adequate explanation for WTF just happened.

    Back to the pond. Here it is:

    [​IMG]

    Turns out it’s a small key. Now where does this key go?

    Remember the locked desk drawer in Mr. Blackwood’s study? My notes do.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There’s a small lockbox, and more letters. We have a look at the letters first:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    TL;DR: It’s a letter from the doctor, Milton, addressed to Catherine Blackwood. He fears for James’s sanity. Apparently the man has taken an obsessive interest in occultism, and keeps going on about a ‘curse’. There’s also a terrible secret that Milton and Catherine share, of an event that occurred two years prior – in other words, in 1961, the same year the baby was born.

    My guess is that he helped kill it. Maybe it was one of those Rosemary’s Baby situations. Let’s have a look at the box.

    [​IMG]

    There’s a combination lock.

    Next time on Scratches: we get the combination, and oh boy, if you thought you’d seen bullshit up until now, let me tell ya…



     
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    • Balanced Balanced x 1
    ^ Top  
  12. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,872,437
    Location:
    Djibouti
    Is the combination 12345?
     
    • Button Button x 1
    ^ Top  
  13. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Nigga pls, I own a padlock in real life that's set to 1234. Anything remotely close to realism is right out.

    To compensate for last time, here's a short one.

    Part 8: A microcosm of everything wrong with the point and click adventure game genre (open)

    This is the update where the game takes the tiny bit of goodwill it built up with the well-executed spookies, and scoop slams it straight down into the dirt. Brace yerselves.

    [​IMG]

    So, the box. Five digits is all that stands between us and its contents. Let’s think logically about this.

    [​IMG]

    …is not something you’ll hear me say from here on out, because that's a terrible idea. The search starts here – or rather, it starts with us thinking of a series of characters the game has gone to some lengths to keep hidden from us. Recall the birth certificate in the nursery:

    [​IMG]

    The name of the child is obscured…

    Now recall, if you will, the coffin in the crypt:

    [​IMG]

    We can’t read this either, as it’s too dark.

    This is where the bullshit begins.

    I’m going to ignore the question of how the hell we’re supposed to know that we’re looking for the name in the first place – because after all, seeking out information so scrupulously hidden from us borders on the sensical – and instead do a small recap of the magnificent pile of bovine fecal matter that is the whole light situation in this building.

    • Firstly, the power is out, meaning no electrical lamps. Fine, that’s a horror staple, suspension of disbelief is intact. There’s no electricity in the crypt anyway, so it wouldn’t have helped us here in any case.

    • Secondly, there’s the fact that Michael neglected to bring a flashlight, even though he knew he would be moving into an old, large house that had stood abandoned for years. That’s pretty bad, but Michael’s stupidity and general helplessness is well documented by now, so it’s not that unrealistic, all in all.

    • Then there’s the candles – more specifically, the fact that there aren’t any to be found anywhere in this entire yuge Victorian mansion. This might actually have plot relevance we’ve yet to uncover, so I’m tentatively fine with it, although I really, really don’t see how it would be of any benefit to ghosts nor Monsieur Elderly-Madman Blackwood to remove them, yet leave a perfectly working lantern about.

    • …which brings us to the lantern. By some astonishing coincidence, it ran out of oil just as we left the basement last night. Fine. But you’re telling me there isn’t a drop more oil in the can upstairs, that there isn’t any oil in any of the other cans, and no oil ANYWHERE in the garage? Fuck off.

    • But why do we even need oil in the first place? We have matches. Michael is carrying around a matchbook. Yes, there is one, yes there are matches in it, and yes, he has used them before, so we know they work. There’s also a ton of flammable material inside the house. He even lit a fire in the fireplace just a few minutes ago. Why can’t he grab a log and bring it with him out into the crypt? Why can’t he take a few of the newspapers stashed in the attic and make a fire down there? There are wooden pews right there in the room, for crying out loud.

    You know, I can just about accept, exercising extreme leniency, that he doesn’t want to do that, for fear of burning himself or some other contrived excuse. But even then



    even then


    there’s this motherfucking thing right here:

    [​IMG]

    You pedal, and there’s light. There’s a dynamo torch on the handlebar. How can the devs draw such obvious attention to the bike light, even making a special pre-rendered animation for when it lights up as the wheel spins, and then not let us use it? WHY can’t you carry this down into the crypt and spin the wheel a few times Michael you disgraceful wimpy freeloading bum of a failed author cocksucker –





    Right. Let's solve ourselves a puzzle. Remember Jerry jokingly suggesting we vandalise the crypt? Let’s vandalise it, shall we. I'm in that mood.
    There's a domed ceiling with tinted windows:

    [​IMG]

    Remember that small stone we found, by the plaques in this very spot? We lob it at the dome:

    [​IMG]

    Nope.

    Logic suggests that by letting us try and fail, the game is telling us to find another solution. Logic is a word Scratches has never heard before. We retrieve the stone and try again:

    [​IMG]

    There we go. Heading down to the sublevel, however, we find that nothing’s changed. A thin ray of sunlight pierces the crypt, but it’s not in the right spot.

    If you’ve any familiarity with adventure games at all, you’ll be thinking ‘light reflecting puzzle!’ right about now.

    [​IMG]

    Back in the house, the search for a mirror begins. Manor-wide bullshit item hunt count: 3 4. :retarded:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    It’s on a table in the room with the safe. This room really is a hotspot for paralogical activity. We detach the mirror with the screwdriver. Then, we attach to it the wire we removed from the crypt door. So we can hang it on the wall, duh.

    We return to the crypt, and find a good spot for it.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And now for the biggest ‘fuck you’ yet:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    All that for one lousy letter.

    I’m not sure how to lead you through this next bit. I certainly didn’t figure it out on my own. Haven't for a while, to tell you the truth.

    We’re back in the nursery. There are a few blocks on the floor. Here:

    [​IMG]

    O, B, I and N are lying on the floor, plainly visible. Spoiler: the kid’s name was Robin. Lucky that the parents didn’t tidy up before bricking up the door, eh?

    [​IMG]

    Each letter has a corresponding numerical digit. We find the number for R in the stack on the trolley. R-O-B-I-N comes out to 59097. It’s the stupidest password ever.

    The thing is that if you, through some freak bout of psychotic dementia, actually managed to deduce on your own that these blocks are to be used in this puzzle, and that the task is to spell out a name, you don't even need to know that the last letter is R. What else is going to combine with O, B, I and N? That's right, yet again the most obvious solution to the task at hand (albeit carried out in a spectacularly cumbersome way) – examining the epitaph – is a red herring. There's just layers upon layers of unintuitive garbage.

    We head back up the rope.

    [​IMG]

    They haven't even bothered to render a skybox for this.

    Back in the study:

    [​IMG]

    59097. The box pops open, to reveal…

    [​IMG]

    Nothing, but it’s an obvious fake bottom. A piece of wood in the centre can be rotated, and there are what look like buttons on the inner left and right.

    The solution is actually quite simple, for once: we turn the piece of wood so that it points towards the left, and click on the left button. Then we do the same for the other side.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The bottom pops off.

    [​IMG]

    There’s some money, and a key with a cross on it. The only place we’ve yet to explore is the chapel, so that's where we'll be heading next.

     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2019
    • Rage Rage x 2
    • :M :M x 1
    ^ Top  
  14. baud Arbiter

    baud
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2016
    Messages:
    1,148
    Location:
    Septentrion
    :avatard: The stupidity of this game amuse me
     
    ^ Top  
  15. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    :salute:

    It's become substantially more amoosing for me too now that I've completely given up on solving this shit on my own.

    Part 9: The Asinine Chapel and Other Tales of Foolishness (open)


    First of all, a small interlude. There's a phone conversation that took place an update or two ago, but I forgot to include it because it's incredibly irrelevant.

    We call the number from the paper in the safe, which I'm sure you have forgotten about by now. It's for a bank.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG] Good day, the National Bank of Northumberland. Robert Blake speaking.


    Robert Blake sounds – and I don't mean to be insensitive – extremely homosexual.

    Hello, Robert. I need some help.


    [​IMG]

    We're given dialogue options. Scratches is an RPG: confirmed. It could make the Codex Top RPG ranking if it weren't for the fact that it's shit.

    We ask about the doctor.

    Do you have a customer there registered as Christopher Edward Milton? He's a doctor.

    [​IMG] I'm sorry sir, I can't give you that kind of information.


    It's alright, I work in the hospital with him. My name is... Dr. Mike Rutherford.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_Rutherford

    [​IMG] Which hospital would that be, sir?


    Rothbury... Health & Care Medical Center.

    Does anyone else get annoyed by irregular British/American spelling, or is it just me?

    [​IMG] Please hold on a few moments. I'm sorry sir... I see we had someone called that a few years ago but everything in the files has been removed. It'd seem he's no longer a customer of this bank.


    Oh I see... good old Christopher is still playing pranks on me. That old joker! Ha ha ha...

    [​IMG] Sir, you said your name was...?


    Uhm... I won't waste your time anymore, good day!


    *click*

    Smooth. Let's call again:

    [​IMG]

    Alright, alright. Relax.

    *click*

    Supposedly, we could've gotten more information out of this guy if we had picked the other dialogue option. Choice and consequence, baby, this game's got it all. As it stands, though, that was a waste of time.

    Back to the present. Here’s the time:

    [​IMG]

    Okay. Chapel.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Beautiful. There’s even a wooden Jeezes. There’s also a spiral staircase to our right.

    We have a look at some of the stuff lying about.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    What’s this on the altar? It’s a candle, right when we don’t need them anymore. Up yours, game.

    [​IMG]

    Up close, Jesus is just a tad horrifying.

    [​IMG]

    But what’s that below him? It’s a trapdoor!

    [​IMG]

    It’s a goddamn trapdoor Michael you cretin. We take the crowbar to it:

    [​IMG]

    …and much to my surprise, it works. And it actually isn’t a trapdoor. There’s a chain down in a groove in the concrete. We can’t pull on it or anything, but it does look like a pull chain. Let’s try the stairs.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There’s not much up in the gallery, only a coat hanger and a small cabinet, which we take a closer look at:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Inside the top drawer is a Bible. We read the Bible. We are pious men.

    [​IMG]

    Page after page of unreadable text (not being heretical here, it is actually unreadable), until:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Nice, just like in Shawshank Redemption.

    The question is, what good is a nail to us? The answer lies with Wooden Nightmare Jesus up on the wall. He’s a little loose.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    That's one way to put it.

    [​IMG]

    This, however, does feels slightly heretical.

    [​IMG]

    All right, now that we've nailed Jesus, we turn our attention to the INRI sign above his head.

    [​IMG]

    It’s tilted.

    [​IMG]

    Michael the midget. Crowbar time.

    We knock it into place, and we’re treated to a cutscene of Jesus falling forward, and by doing so, pulling the chain, revealing a secret passage underneath the altar.

    [​IMG]

    Clever. It must be a hell of a job righting Jesus and getting that huge stone block back into place, though. Damn near impossible, I'd say. In fact, I don't think falling Jesus would be enough to get it out of the way in the first place. But never mind that; with some trepidation, we head down the hole.

    [​IMG]

    It’s a small study, but it's much too dark to make out anything specific.

    [​IMG]

    Luckily for us there’s a candle on the shelf. (*grumble*)

    We light it, and have a look around:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There's a nabbable branch on the desk. Not sure what we need it for. Maybe we can pawn it for some health potions later, now that we've established this is an RPG.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And now the letters:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    TL;DR: James is Cursed, capital C. He asks Christopher Milton to please trust him in his efforts to un-curse himself, and if he doesn’t make it, to finish the job himself. Apparently, the Dhalmaar tribe know of a way to free themselves from the curse. James has left an account of the un-cursification process:

    (Five bucks says a mysterious figure is slamming the trapdoor on our head when we finish reading this)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I’m out five dollars, as nothing happens. TL;DR: In days of yore, a vicious god tormented the Dhalmaar tribe. Eventually they figured out a way to subdue the god and make it serve them. Seeking to limit its evil powers they trapped it in... a mask. Well shit.

    The ritual that was performed to keep the spirit at bay is described in detail. Four items are required: one item belonging to the “victim”, another item belonging to the “victimizer” – these have to be mixed with a medicinal herb native to the region, as well as a branch from a special tree.

    Seeing as the curse is apparently upon us, going by the scratching in the walls and whatnot, we’ll probably have to perform this ritual. The good news is that we already have three out of the four items, just about. The branch was just lying right here on the desk. The medicinal herb is most likely the potted plant from the greenhouse, which James’s notes mentioned as having been imported from Africa. An item belonging to the victim is a non-issue, assuming the victim is Michael. That leaves the item belonging to the “victimizer”. I have no idea what that could be. Maybe the mask itself?

    First of all, let’s go get that plant. We head over to the greenhouse, and take the shears to it.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Done and done. I have no idea what to do next. Tell you what, we should probably keep Jerry informed of the developments.

    [​IMG] Yes...?


    Jerry, it's me.

    [​IMG] Michael! I was just about to call you... I've been thinking about what you've told me... and you could be onto something there. But I'm worried about your safety now. This could be dangerous.


    What do you mean by "dangerous"?

    [​IMG] Well... let's suppose you're right and James Blackwood is indeed hiding somewhere inside the house. He's a madman, a murderer, and your life could be in danger.


    Jerry... if James Blackwood is still alive, he'd be nothing more than a harmless, decrepit old man. I don't think I'd have any problem outdoing him.

    All the physical tasks you've had trouble with so far suggest otherwise. Even if the guy's a paraplegic I'd put your chances at 50-50.

    [​IMG] And what if he's armed?


    I'm willing to take that risk. He surely knows I'm here by now. What if he's waiting for me to leave so that he can escape? I can't miss this opportunity.

    That makes no sense.

    [​IMG] The opportunity of "what", for Christ's sake?


    Of knowing! I'm already too much into this Jerry... and if I don't know what happened inside this house I... I won't be able to sleep again!

    [Charisma: failure]

    [​IMG] You're... you're obsessed. You were supposed to finish your book, get some rest. And now look at this... what are you going to say to your editor?


    Who knows, maybe this whole episode inspires me to write that ending. I'm sorry... I can't leave this now, Jerry. It's... it's too late!

    [​IMG] I... I can't believe this. I don't understand you. Doesn't the possibility of spending another night in that house with a creepy old man hiding in the basement scare you?


    I know what you're trying to do. Goodbye, Jerry.

    [​IMG] Michael... Michael! It's dangerous do you hear me! Dangerous! You have to leave that place!


    I'll keep you informed.


    *click*

    We showed him.

    Let’s go see if there’s mail. Mail, you see, is delivered multiple times a day to this remote manor.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    An eviction notice!

    [​IMG]

    Michael is not pleased.

    [​IMG]

    Friendship with Jerry: OVER.

    Here’s something unintuitive for you, for a change: according to the eviction notice, we don't have to be out until tomorrow, and Michael is adamant about continuing his investigation and snubbed Jerry only a few minutes ago when he begged him to leave. Michael really doesn't want to leave. However, to advance the story further, what we have to do is try to leave. I have to say, it feels ever so slightly illogical.

    [​IMG]

    First, we take the flat battery from the car. :rearenginefuckyeah:

    We bring it into the garage. This is the point where the game adds insult to injury. We head over to the bicycle – you know, the one with the perfectly working bike light on it – and disconnect the dynamo from the perfectly working bike light and attach it to the battery instead.

    [​IMG]

    We tread the wheels a few times to charge it up. Fine, no complaints from me.

    We put the battery back in place, and get in the car.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    But of course, we do not want to drive off. We’ve known all along that this is something we absolutely do not want to do.

    [​IMG]

    The time is 4:00 PM. This is significant because this is the arbitrary point at which we can advance the plot in a real way instead of just faffing about.

    Our next task is related to the spooky photograph taken by the maid, showing Blackwood ostensibly burying his wife in the garden. Let’s have another look:

    [​IMG]

    Righto. You’ll notice the shadow from the spire pointing straight at the spot where James is digging. Obviously we don’t know at what time the photo was taken, so you’d think this wouldn’t be much help to us. You’d be wrong. Actually, you’d be right, because this is as vague and pointless a clue as most of the others we’ve found today, but it does help Michael.

    You can’t really tell from the photo where in the garden we need to look. What we need to do is exit the front door and take the path leading towards the chapel.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    This is what happens if we dig in the wrong spot. Michael actually takes the time to fill in the hole again, God bless.

    [​IMG]

    Notice the shadow from the spire. If we had tried to follow up on this clue before 4 o’clock, that shadow wouldn’t be here, and Michael would moan about not knowing where to dig. There’s really no way of knowing that this is the right time. Personally, I think that’s absolutely marvelous game design.

    [​IMG]

    Diggin’, diggin’…

    [​IMG]

    Oh my word.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There we are. Michael is lucid enough to nab one of Mrs. Blackwood’s teeth. I’m confident that it’s meant for matching with dental records, and not because we’ll need it for another contrived puzzle. Now that that’s taken care of, we rebury the poor wretch.

    [​IMG]

    But hold on a minute. If this is Mrs. Blackwood, who was that in the coffin?

    Next time: I have no idea, but I’m getting used to that.



    We're getting there (I hope), slowly but surely.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2019
    • Brofist Brofist x 2
    • :M :M x 1
    ^ Top  
  16. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,872,437
    Location:
    Djibouti
    Clearly, it was Mr Skellington, the butler.
     
    • Slam dunk! Slam dunk! x 1
    ^ Top  
  17. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Part 10: The mask the charm... and the truth (open)


    Let's start by having a gander at Michael's journal, which he's carried with him all weekend. I'll admit to having been a bit dumb for not checking it sooner, as there are some relevant observations in here. Michael's thoughts on the most recent events read as follows:

    [​IMG]

    Looks like we could've spared ourselves some bellyaching if we'd only thought to look at the journal after examining the epitaph in the crypt. I assume Michael spelled it all out for us then, as we had already examined the cubes at that point. Whatever, it doesn't make the puzzle any less stupid.

    Anyway, Michael concurs – there's only one item on the agenda right now: we have to assemble the amulet, perform the ritual, and free ourselves from the terrible curse of a sadistic god... or something.

    [​IMG]

    Look at it, look at this evil thing... it must be stopped....

    While we're up in the gallery, we poke around for other objects which might potentially serve as the item of the victimizer. James's notes on the spirit said that when it roamed free, it took the shape of a 'tall, feline-like figure' (such sloppiness, there's no reason to append the '-like' here since feline already means cat-like... /autism) There just so happens to be a curious amulet displayed on a bust by the door:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    A lion's claw? Jackpot. We use the pliers to remove the claw from the rest of the necklace.

    [​IMG]

    That should have us covered for ingredients. I was wrong in assuming Michael to be the victim; we'll be using Catherine Blackwood's tooth in the ritual. I know this because of the message I recieved when Trying Everything on Everything™ after picking up the claw:

    [​IMG]

    'In their current state?' We'll have to grind them down, I'll bet. To the kitchen!

    [​IMG]

    There's a coffee grinder on the kitchen table. I hadn't noticed you could get a close-up of it until now.

    [​IMG]

    We chuck the claw in there, and crank the crank.

    [​IMG]

    ...and we collect the ground-up remains.

    [​IMG]

    We do the same with the tooth.

    [​IMG]

    Finally we combine the tooth and the claw, and the resulting mixed powder with the leaves and berries:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [Your Alchemy skill has increased by 4]

    True to form, the game offers no clues as to what to do next. What we need to do is go upstairs to the attic and into the small room with the stove we fixed on our first day. Remember that stove? Of course you don't. I wouldn't have but for the magic of note-taking.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We use the paint can lid as a plate on which to put our queer mixture, and light the stove with our last remaining match.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Look, we've created slime.

    [​IMG]

    It's actually a translucent stone, warm to the touch. We combine it with the final ingredient – the branch.

    [​IMG]

    [Item obtained: Wand of Remove Curse (charges: 1)]

    This is it. The big showdown. The one you've all been waiting for.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]

    Expelliarmus!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    ...okay then. Curse: LIFTED. The lighting has changed slightly, into a kind of soothing, pinkish glow. I've never gotten a spa treatment, but I imagine the result is much the same as this.

    Well, I think we're just about done here. We've exorcised the spirit and now we can leave in good conscience –

    [​IMG]

    Oh, bloody 'ell.

    [​IMG]

    Much to my surprise, we're allowed to leave the building.

    Let's make a break for it.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Bah, humbug.

    [​IMG]

    The sky has turned a deep shade of crimson...

    There's nothing for it. We have to go back in.

    Let's check out the fireplace, see if we can hear anything.

    [​IMG]

    What's this? The grate is open. Now we know whrere the scratches really came from.

    [​IMG]

    It's a small decrepit room.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Stepping over into the corner, however...

    [​IMG]

    I remember this door. Through the bars in this door I saw a terrible silhouette just last night.

    [​IMG]

    It's deathly quiet.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There are bloodstains on the table and on the floor. In the corner...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    A hole in the wall, filled with a menacing blackness...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Save me, Wooden Jesus.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Fuck!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    fuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuck

    [​IMG]

    The door slams shut just in time.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    That disfigured face is still stalking my nightmares, and I've never put foot inside a Victorian house ever since. But there's certainly one thing that I'm grateful for...

    It was thanks to my encounter below that house that I was able to finish my book and become a prolific writer.


    [​IMG]

    The cell below swims into view once again.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Something's moving at speed into the hole in the wall.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Up a narrow tunnel... is that sunlight?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    That's it from Blackwood Manor.

    So what exactly happened there? A few things have become clear: James and Catherine's son Robin didn't really die, but was born disfigured and possibly damaged in other ways. Rather than raise him normally or give him away, they – whom I believe to have been only Catherine and Doctor Milton, at least at first – faked the boy's death and locked him away in a hidden cell below the manor. The noises that terrified James so much were the sounds of Robin below. He did eventually learn the truth, however; if not earlier, then at the latest when Catherine was killed by Robin's hand, in a manner similar to what had happened to the teddy bear Michael found. James buried his wife in the garden, but could not bear to shoulder the burden of his terrible secret for long, and died soon after. Michael was wrong – it actually was James Blackwood's body in the crypt. And Milton? Did he simply run away, or did he, too, become a victim of the abomination lurking below Blackwood manor? That will remain a mystery.

    And what of the curse? It is possible that there was never a curse at all, and the feeling of having been marked was merely a symptom of James and Michael's overwrought psyches and hyperactive imaginations, set loose by the power of suggestion. That mask may have been nothing more sinister than an ordinary ritual object, worshipped by cannibals long ago.
    ...or was it?


    In any case, this is where our story ends, and all that remains for me is to bid you: good night.

    If you can.

     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2019
    • Brofist Brofist x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • :M :M x 1
    ^ Top  
  18. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    Final thoughts: poor, very bad, no good gaem all in all. I believe that's clear from the LP. There are some things it does well – the spoops in particular are measured and built up well, and it doesn't resort to cheap scares (but includes one jumpy moment to keep you on your toes for the remainder of the game). Soundtrack is also chilling in places, and appropriately Psycho-ish when it needs to be. It's not a standout or anything, but it's one of the few things that does what it's supposed to do. I also think the story could've been effective in a better game, because there's some cool stuff in there. That's pretty much it, and sadly it all drowns in comically bad puzzles and shitty busywork.

    If you absolutely have to experience this game, I suggest you read a Let's Play instead of playing it yourself.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2019
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
    ^ Top  
  19. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,872,437
    Location:
    Djibouti
    i dont think i can recall another lp already finished on the first page

    good job men
     
    • Thanks! Thanks! x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    ^ Top  
  20. baud Arbiter

    baud
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2016
    Messages:
    1,148
    Location:
    Septentrion
    Or perhaps the maid.

    Regarding the Bible found in the chapel it's a Protestant Bible, called the Geneva Bible. But the altar of the chapel is set up for a Catholic mass :deathclaw:
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
    ^ Top  
  21. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    thanks for following men

    Now this is the kind of excessive nitpicking I like to see, my brother in arms :salute:
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    ^ Top  
  22. Kabas Savant Patron

    Kabas
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2018
    Messages:
    394
    Wasn't there a continuation of this game?
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • quality shit quality shit x 1
    ^ Top  
  23. Strange Fellow Arcane Patron

    Strange Fellow
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2018
    Messages:
    2,003
    A what now? Oh...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Looks like there's a chance of this LP being abandoned on page 3 after all.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    • Sweat gathers upon my brow, let me dab it Sweat gathers upon my brow, let me dab it x 1
    • :M :M x 1
    ^ Top  

(buying stuff via the above buttons helps us pay the hosting bills, thanks!)